Closer Protection

E-Petition for Vote of No Confidence in the Security Industry Authority

The Close Protection training core competencies imposed by the SIA in 2006 had been affected by their decision-making practices due to:

  • The SIA’s own specific agenda of a ‘minimalist approach’
  • The SIA’s focus on personal vetting, criminal convictions and right to work in the UK
  • Time available in consideration to other industry sector responsibilities
  • Cost to research and implement proper standards
  • The lack of knowledge and sector understanding of the working environment
  • Consultation with parties with biased/ conflict of interests
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The UK National Occupational Standards for Close Protection which were reviewed and changed many times over the years are finally quite fit for purpose in 2011 – for a UK environment that is. If these standards are to be fully recognised and properly transferred into training core competencies then a professional approach to the issue needs to be conducted without experiencing any detrimental influences.

In light of the ‘cull of the Quangos’ in September 2010, the Minister of State, Home Office, Baroness Neville-Jones told the Lords that it remained the Government’s clear intention to abolish the SIA in its present form and transfer the powers to a new regulatory regime by the end of 2013. It was planned for this ‘reform’, or new ‘regime’, to be more ‘industry led’ insofar as implementing standards was concerned. However, one of the best tools for efficiency is transparency and if proper standards are to be implemented, ones that are actually fit for purpose, then the decision-making practises must be based on methodologies that are not affected by the points listed above. It must also prove that all those participants involved do not have vested or biased commercial interests or otherwise.

One month later in October 2010, in direct response to the government’s announcement of the abolishment of the SIA, the ‘Security Regulation Alliance was formed.  Members of this Alliance, of which include the BSIA and SfS have “Pledged to act in a transparent and consensual way to reflect the Security Industry’s views as a single voice and will, with the SIA, government and other partners, formulate the basis of the new regulatory regime and enforcement body”.

Transparency is one thing, remaining impartial and independent are two others. If the new regime does not learn from lessons past, if they operate as an alliance of like-minded groups in their own interests and those of solely promoting business and profitability then standards in Close Protection will ultimately not improve and the industry will not move forward. The standards setters, must remain independent and impartial and they must strive for not only improving the market place but for the very service being received by the end-user, the Principal.

After several years of research on this subject involving communicating directly with the SIA I have no confidence whatsoever that after the formation of this 'new regime' standards will improve at all.

As a result, this e-petition has been created for the benefit of highlighting the UK private security industry's vote of no confidence in the regulatory body The Security Industry Authority; specifically, the training standards implemented for the Close Protection sector since 2006. I want the UK Government to recognise the current unfit for purpose standards currently imposed in my industry and to create a new body comprising of properly experienced security professionals dedicated to implementing a proper workable fit for purpose training standard that is transparent, impartial and independent.

The standards imposed do not only affect the actual service being received by the end user; the client/ Principal but our industry as a whole. If we, as an industry, do not present our view as THE single voice then standards will not improve and the end result will remain unfit for purpose.

Many thanks in advance for your support.

Richard J Aitch

Vote of No Confidence in the Security Industry Authority - e-petitions